Arab nations condemn Israel for nuclear weapons

Arab nations condemn Israel for nuclear weaponsArab nations condemned Israel for having nuclear weapons, on the final day Friday of a general conference of the UN watchdog International Atomic Energy Agency.
Omani ambassador Salim Mohammed Al-Riyami presented the agenda item “Israeli nuclear capabilities and threat” saying there was concern over the “failure of the universality” of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) since Israel refuses to sign it.
Israel neither confirms nor denies it has nuclear weaponsm, although it is believed to have some 200 atom bombs.
“Israel still benefits from total freedom to develop its nuclear capacities,” Riyami told the 144 member states of the IAEA, which uses safeguard agreements to monitor compliance with the NPT.
Riyami had said in a document submitted along with the agenda item: “The policies of successive Israeli government have obstructed the peace process in the Middle East and all initiatives to free the region . . . of weapons of mass destruction, and in particular of nuclear weapons, have failed.”
The IAEA was also set to debate a resolution on safeguards, with Moslem nations pushing for changes in the text to target Israel for having nuclear weapons.
At the conference which began Monday Arab states on Thursday pushed through a resolution clearly aimed at Israel, calling for a Middle East free of nuclear weapons.

Copyright AFP (Agence France-Presse), 2007